Worrying about China: The Language of Chinese Critical Inquiry

Worrying about China: The Language of Chinese Critical Inquiry

by Gloria Davies
     
 

ISBN-10: 067403225X

ISBN-13: 9780674032255

Pub. Date: 03/30/2009

Publisher: Harvard

What can we do about China? This question, couched in pessimism, is often raised in the West but it is nothing new to the Chinese, who have long worried about themselves. In the last two decades since the “opening” of China, Chinese intellectuals have been carrying on in their own ancient tradition of “patriotic worrying.”
As an intellectual…  See more details below

Overview

What can we do about China? This question, couched in pessimism, is often raised in the West but it is nothing new to the Chinese, who have long worried about themselves. In the last two decades since the “opening” of China, Chinese intellectuals have been carrying on in their own ancient tradition of “patriotic worrying.”
As an intellectual mandate, “worrying about China” carries with it the moral obligation of identifying and solving perceived “Chinese problems”—social, political, cultural, historical, or economic—in order to achieve national perfection. In Worrying about China, Gloria Davies pursues this inquiry through a wide range of contemporary topics, including the changing fortunes of radicalism, the peculiarities of Chinese postmodernism, shifts within official discourse, attempts to revive Confucianism for present-day China, and the historically problematic engagement of Chinese intellectuals with Western ideas.
Davies explores the way perfectionism permeates and ultimately propels Chinese intellectual talk to the point that the drive for perfection has created a moralism that condemns those who do not contribute to improving China. Inside the heart of the New China persists ancient moralistic attitudes that remain decidedly nonmodern. And inside the postmodernism of thousands of Chinese scholars and intellectuals dwells a decidedly anti-postmodern quest for absolute certainty.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780674032255
Publisher:
Harvard
Publication date:
03/30/2009
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
324
Product dimensions:
6.10(w) x 9.10(h) x 0.90(d)

Table of Contents

  • Acknowledgments
  • Introduction
  • 1. Worrying about China
  • 2. Divided over China
  • 3. Theory and Taxonomy: A Post-Maoist Pursuit of Cultural Integrity
  • 4. Reasoning after Mao
  • 5. A Poetics of Inquiry
  • Notes
  • Glossary
  • Index

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